now i understand why wizard asked me last friday if he was going to die. at 8:06 a.m. on monday morning, while trembling on the bathroom floor after having my guts explode out both ends, i felt like i was dying. i wanted death to relieve me of that cold sweaty shivering agony. wizard was back at work. papi was at work. i was alone on the floor wondering what death feels like, if death is the peace i believe it is, the peace i hope for, the relief i longed for in that moment.
because i have the flu and because i am alone and because i feel somewhat tragic, i’m reading elie weisel’s night, his account as a holocaust survivor. it is a small thin book that publishers rejected at the time it was written and won the nobel peace prize nearly 30 years later. reading about auschwitz puts the insignificance of my flu in perspective. although, reading about the violence people are capable of doesn’t help me want to live.
i have a friend whose divorce is final today. she is happy, mostly. i didn’t know her when she was married. i don’t know if she was happy on her wedding day, but i assume that she was, because most people are. i worry a little about her, about the happiness in her present life that she attributes to being in love with another. i know that happiness. i know that happiness doesn’t last. if we attribute our happiness to another, what will we feel when the other disappoints us in some small or large way? then do we attribute our unhappiness to them, too? assigning another the responsibility for our happiness or our unhappiness (which most frequently occurs unconsciously) is not fair. i trust that she cognitively understands that concept, but i don’t know if she has learned to live it yet. i know only a few who have learned to live that lesson. i’m hoping that i am one of them.
with the flu, pondering death, reading about the holocaust, thinking about my friend in love who is getting divorced, i drink chamomile tea and wait. i wait to feel better. i wait to come back from this death-feeling to an alive-feeling. i wait to know what to do next. i wait and wait and wait between cold sweats and waves of nausea. i wait alone. i want this aloneness. i want to feel the fullness and emptiness of alone. we all die alone. nursing myself through the flu alone is good practice.